Sauromatum venosum

Leaf number of Sauromatum venosum

I wonder if members saw the article on Sauromatum venosum by Henry Noltie
(RBG Edinburgh) in the June 1997 issue of The New Plantsman (volume 4 part
2).  In common with many authors (e.g. Polunin and Stainton, 1965; Bown,
1988; The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening, 1992; Mabberley, 1997) Noltie
states plainly that " each corm bears a single leaf ".  In contrast, Mayo
et al. (1997) comment that leaves of Sauromatum are " usually solitary,
rarely up to 3 ".

In my own experience of growing the plant outdoors, (Somerset, UK),
isolated cormels do tend to produce a single leaf in their first year but
by the second year two leaves are quite normal and subsequently three
leaves are not very unusual.  In relatively impoverished cultivation
conditions, as in the small pots used in the Alpine House at RHS Wisley
(Surrey, UK), a solitary leaf may indeed be normal even with old corms. 
However, given a free root run in ordinary garden soil the plant grows very
much larger.  Not having seen the plant in the wild I am unable to comment
on the situation in nature.  I should be interested to know others'
experience of the plant in cultivation.

I have been growing the plant for many years and have found it to be
sufficiently hardy outdoors in Somerset that I no longer bother to lift
corms in autumn.  My plants flower regularly but have never produced viable
seed possibly because of their clonal nature.

I would like to get hold of the other Sauromatum species, S. brevipes. 
Does anyone know a source?

Bown, D. (1988). Aroids. London: Century Hutchinson. ISBN 0 7126 1822 8
Mabberley, D. J. (1977). The Plant-book. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press. ISBN 0 521 41421 0
Mayo, S. J., Bogner, J. and Boyce, P. C. (1997). The Genera of Araceae.
London: RBG Kew. ISBN 1 9003747 22 9
Polunin, O. and Stainton, A. (1984) Flowers of the Himalaya. Oxford: Oxford
University Press. ISBN 0 19 217623 4
The New Royal Horticultural Society Dictionary of Gardening. (1992).
Editor-in-Chief A. Huxley. London: Macmillan Press. ISBN 0 333 47494 5

To the editors: I am new to the list and would appreciate knowing if there
is an archive of postings that I can look at.  Thank you.

Also, what is the significance of the password?

David Constantine
Somerset, UK

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